June 18, 2024

20+ Healthy Side Dishes & Ideas For Low Calorie Easy Meals

In today’s fast-paced world, maintaining a well-balanced diet can be quite a challenge. With hectic schedules and an abundance of processed food options, it’s easy to neglect the importance of incorporating wholesome ingredients into our meals. A simple yet effective way I go around enhancing the nutritional value of my meals is by focusing on healthy side dishes. Just like a symphony where every instrument plays a vital role, side dishes harmoniously complement the main course, creating a complete dining experience. By selecting the right ingredients and flavors, you can infuse your plate with an array of essential nutrients, vibrant colors, and tantalizing textures. Be sure to proceed with caution, as these quick and healthy side dishes might tempt you to double up on the servings and skip the main course altogether!



Perfect Oven-Roasted Broccoli

healthy side dishes like oven roasted broccoli

Image via A Spicy Perspective

Try out one of my favorite healthy side dishes, the Roasted Broccoli recipe, which turns this humble vegetable into a star-studded delight.


Southwest Brussels Sprouts and Green Beans

healthy side dishes green beans and Brussels sprouts

Image via A Spicy Perspective

Let me pull you over to the green side with the perfect blend of the crunchiness of roasted Brussels sprouts and the creamy goodness of beans. I’m positive the southwest spices will have you shouting “olé!” with every delicious bite.


Rainbow Roasted Carrots

Roasted Carrots healthy sides

Image via Culinary Hill

Prepare for a carrot revolution as the Roasted Carrots recipe takes these simple roots to new heights, transforming them into golden-brown wonders that will have you craving veggies like never before.


Roasted Butternut Squash

healthy sides butternut squash

Image via Culinary Hill

Roasted Butternut Squash recipe delivers caramelized sweetness, velvety textures, and comforting aromas that will warm your heart and soul. It’s my favorite go-to comfort food on chilly evenings.


Thai Mango Salad

thai mango salad

Image via Takes Two Eggs

Looking for a healthy side dish that screams summer? Say no more! Incorporate a bit of Thai cuisine with this refreshing som tam mamuang (Thai mango salad) which combines tart green mangoes, red bell pepper, red onion, refreshing cucumber slices, aromatic cilantro, mint, crushed peanuts, and fried shallots for the ultimate taste of summer.


Chinese Garlic Green Beans Healthy Side Dish

Green beans side dish

Image via Takes Two Eggs

Get ready to wok and roll with the Chinese Garlic Green Beans recipe, where tender and crisp green beans are transformed into a delectable side dish that boasts the perfect harmony of savory garlic, fragrant seasonings, and a satisfying crunch that will have you reaching for chopsticks in no time.


Silken Tofu Side Dish Recipe

silken tofu dish

Image via Takes Two Eggs

If you need a flavorful side dish that can be made in under 5 minutes, this is a recipe for you! Even though Chinese soft tofu is most often served cold, rest assured you can easily heat it up and serve it with steamed rice for a super quick and healthy meal.


Crispy Creole Roasted Zucchini Side Dish

roasted zucchini

Image via A Spicy Perspective

Brace yourself for a zucchini transformation that will have you falling head over heels for this versatile vegetable. Crispy Creole Roasted Zucchini just goes that extra step with its golden-brown exterior, tender interior, and a fiery kick of Creole seasoning that will ignite your taste buds.


Grilled Vegetable Kabobs with Fajita Butter

healthy side dish grilled veggie kabobs

Image via A Spicy Perspective

The best side dish for picnics is here! This healthy vegetarian skewer celebrates the summer season with the rich flavors of corn, zucchini, and peppers. Or, if you’re like me, just use whatever remaining vegetables you have, add them to the mix, and start up your grill.


Healthy Mashed Potatoes Side Dish Recipe

easy healthy mashed potatoes

Feel Good Foodie

Experience the joy of guilt-free indulgence as you savor every velvety spoonful of this comforting but healthy side dish. These mashed potatoes are made with naturally buttery yukon potatoes, and they usually put a smile on the face of those with dietary restrictions, as they are the best low-in-fat, high-in-potassium option for a side dish out there.

These Quick & Easy Healthy Side Dishes Will Be Life-Savers At Dinnertime


Cauliflower Fried Rice

cauliflower fried rice

Feel Good Foodie

I was amazed by how this clever substitution can deliver all the taste and texture you love with an added nutritional boost. This creative twist swaps out the grains for cauliflower, resulting in a lighter and veggie-packed version of a classic dish. It’s a great dairy-free and easily made gluten-free side dish.

Lebanese Eggplant Moussaka

eggplant moussaka

Forks & Foliage

Prepare to fall in love with this Lebanese delight, as the Eggplant Moussaka captures the essence of traditional Lebanese cuisine. The combination of silky eggplant, hearty ground meat, and fragrant spices is the perfect thing for making an impressive side dish!


Beautiful Roasted Artichokes

roasted artichokes

Give Recipe

Even if you’re not the biggest fan of artichokes, there is nothing better than the roasted aroma filling your kitchen when making this side dish recipe. As the artichoke leaves caramelize and become irresistibly tender, you’ll find yourself hooked for their unique flavor and delicate texture.


Bulgar Pilaf or Bulgar Pilavi with Green Lentil

bulgar recipe

Give Recipe

When I get the feeling of wanderlust, I love incorporating different cuisines into my everyday meals. Bulgur pilaf or bulgur pilavi as they in Turkish is a great option to get a quick and flavorful taste of the Middle East.


Authentic Homemade Hummus

hummus side dish recipe

Forks & Foliage

Experience the joy of creating your very own hummus masterpiece. With every scoop of this authentic homemade hummus, I savor the knowledge that I’ve crafted a dip that not only surpasses store-bought versions but also carries my personal touch. This healthy side dish is mm-mm-good.


Roasted Rainbow Carrots And Radishes

roasted carrots healthy side dishes recipe

Forks & Foliage

Whether you’re looking for a colorful side dish or a stunning addition to your meal, Roasted Rainbow Carrots and Radishes will be a hit. Embrace the simplicity and beauty of roasted vegetables while enjoying the visual feast of bright hues of orange, purple, and pink on your plate.


Air Fryer Kale

air fryer kale

Gastroplant

If you’re not the biggest enthusiast about kale like myself, try out this recipe as it might be a game changer! The once bland kale leaves become a crispy, flavorful treat, offering a delightful balance of savory and slightly bitter notes. Each bite is a reminder that healthy eating can be both delicious and exciting.


Grilled Pesto Zucchini Stuffed With Tomatoes And Orzo

grilled pesto zucchini

Half Baked Harvest

Whether you’re looking for a show-stopping side dish or even a main course substitute, this Grilled Stuffed Zucchini recipe will impress. The grill imparts a smoky essence, while the stuffing brings together a harmonious blend creating a mouthwatering dish.


Creamy Vegan Black Beans Recipe

vegan black beans recipe

Veggie Society

This is an amazing recipe for all your vegan friends and can be served as a healthy side dish or even as a dip. Even though we are often tempted to cheat in the cooking process, be sure you don’t use canned beans here, as the slow cooking process makes for a world of difference.


Cucumber Mint Yogurt Salad Cacik

Refresh your palate and be amazed by the simplicity and versatility of this salad. Regardless if you prepare it as a light side dish or a refreshing snack, Cucumber Mint Yogurt Salad (Cacik) offers a cool respite on a hot summer day, transporting you to a breezy Mediterranean terrace.

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